Jaguar Forest Coffee aims to provide much more than a good cup of coffee coffee–their mission is to provide change, health, and sustainability.That’s why inside every bag is USDA-certified organic coffee from Mexico that was bought at fair-trade prices from a single shade-grown origin.
Jaguar Forest offers coffee from Chiapas and Oaxaca, two of the poorest states in Mexico. They pay some of the highest prices for this coffee, thus providing poor farmers with a sustainable economic alternative and putting an end to excessive cattle ranching, which is destroying the forests of southern Mexico.
Today’s coffee is a 50/50 blend of those two regions.
Our coffee is shade-grown deep in the high altitude forests of the Sierra Madre Mountains of Southern Mexico. Oaxaca’s unique soil, light, and altitude makes its coffees among the best in the world.
UNECAFE was formed in 2011 and now represents a few thousand small farms throughout the six growing regions of Oaxaca. The cooperative offers a number of services to their members, including specialized technical assistance to help increase sustainability and production. In evaluating the different flavor profiles of these regions we found the Sierra Sur to produce the sweetest, fullest, and most complex coffees of Oaxaca.
The average farm is roughly two hectares in size, with responsibilities during harvest being shared by the family and community. During the harvest ripe cherries are picked, pulped, fermented, and then sun-dried on patios or on the rooftop. Once dry, the parchment is transported to Oaxaca City for evaluation and storage prior to milling and export.
Our Chiapas coffee grows in the shade near the high slopes of the great Tacana Volcano, just a stone’s throw from Guatemala. Volcanic soil, fresh sea breezes and moisture blowing in over the Pacific give Chiapas coffee its unique characteristics.
Welcome to my Table, here in the corner of this cafe. Today we’re sipping the Mayan Blend, from Jaguar Forest Coffee in Seattle, Washington. Feel free to pull up a chair.
region: Oaxaca, Mexico // Chiapas, Mexico
producer: smallholder farmers
association: UNECAFE // Motozintla (Tapachula)
elevation: 1100 – 1400 // 1000 – 1300 meters above sea level
cultivars: Typica, Bourbon, Caturra, Mundo Novo //
process: fully washed, patio dried
grind: 20, Preciso
coffee: 32 g
water: 515 mL
pour: 2:30 concentric pour
The aroma of this coffee is heavy, pungent, and it erupts out of the bag like a volcano. The packaging might say “light roast,” but this coffee is definitely over-roasted. Smoky, roasty, gassy, burnt.
Taking my first few sips of the cup immediately post-brew, my taste buds are in agreement with my nostrils: this coffee is pretty far beyond a light roast. It’s roasty, it’s metallic, it’s gassy, it’s earthy, it’s woody, it’s burnt. Beneath all of that, yeah, there are very faint wisps and hints of dark chocolate, cinnamon, nuts, citrus; but that roasty smokiness is tough to sip past.
Again—this coffee isn’t roasted into oblivion, but it’s roasted enough to make it a harsh, unpleasant cupping experience.
Full body; juicy mouthfeel; citrus acidity; clean finish.
Jaguar Forest markets their Mayan Blend as a light roast; honey, if this is a light roast I shudder to think what their dark roast must be like, as this coffee was definitely overdone. Now, I’m not talking a roast so dark that the beans were black and oily or anything like that; rather a roast so dark that I could taste very little of the coffee’s natural flavors and a whole lot of the inside of the drum.
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